Promotheus is, in Greek Mythology, a Titan. He stole fire and delivered it to mankind, in defiance of the will of Zeus. As punishment for this crime, he was chained to a rock. Every day, his liver was eaten by an eagle, after which it grew back, because of his immortality.
In these pictures, you see the Hungarian exhibit for the Prague Quadrennial, displayed next to the USA exhibit at St. Anne’s Church. It is titled Donor for Promotheus, and was designed by Czaba Antal.
The installation is intended to support organ donation, specifically seeking both liver donars and monetary contributions to support liver transplants.
The exhibit itself is beautiful and powerful to look at. Four tall metal towers stand around a circular floor treatment engraved with Latin. The towers have regularly spaced holes in them, in which are set what appear to be animal skulls (I assume eagle skulls) A copper-colored metal shell, shaped like a man, is suspended from chains winched to the four towers.
Donor for Promotheus. Concept and Design by Czaba Antal. Curator of the Hungarian Theatre Museum and Institute. Main Sponsor: Ministry of Human Capacities. Photo: Maundy Mitchell Photography
When the exhibit is operated, cranks are turned by white-clad operators, who slowly move the giant copper man-shape into position. The chains make a marvelous clanking noise as they are winched.
The shell of the man has an enormous gash in his side, where his liver should be.
Once he is in position, one of the operators carefully fills the suspended metal form with molten silver metal. It is heated from below, and is carefully worked around inside the shell to keep it spread evenly.
Czaba Antal tells me that the metal is an alloy of some kind, and that it has a melting point of 160 degrees Celsius. More than that, he will not say.